New Zealand actress Tandi Wright (Jack The Giant Slayer) will co-star in Carlton Cuse’s 10-episode A&E Network drama series The Returned. The adaptation of the acclaimed French series, from A+E Studios and FremantleMedia, focuses on a small town that is turned upside down when several local people who have been long presumed dead suddenly reappear. Wright, repped by Silver Linings Entertainment, Lisa Mann Creative Management in Australia and Johnson and Laird Management in New Zealand, will play Claire, the estranged wife of Jack (Mark Pelligrino) and mother to Lena (Sophie Lowe).
Orange Is the New Black standout Samira Wiley has been promoted to regular for the Nerflix/Lionsgate TV series’ recently ordered third season. Wiley, who has appeared in almost all episodes of OITNB‘s first two seasons, will continue as lovable inmate Poussey Washington. She is repped by Innovative Artists.
EXCLUSIVE: One of the most hotly pursued actresses this past pilot season, Mary Elizabeth Winstead, has been tapped as one of the leads in Carlton Cuse’s 10-episode A&E Network drama series The Returned. Also cast in the adaptation of the acclaimed French series are Sandrine Holt (House Of Cards, Hostages) and Agnes Bruckner (24). Returned, from A+E Studios and FremantleMedia, focuses on a small town that is turned upside down when several local people who have been long presumed dead suddenly reappear, bringing with them both positive and detrimental consequences. Winstead plays Rowan, the girlfriend of late musician Simon (Mat Vairo) who had a very difficult time getting past his death 10 years ago and now will have to adjust to his return. Holt, repped by D2 Management and Innovative, plays Julie, a competent compassionate doctor who is struggling in her personal life. Bruckner, repped by APA and Radius, plays the sheriff’s chief deputy.
Related: Jeremy Sisto To Co-Star In A&E Series ‘The Returned’
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EXCLUSIVE: Coming off a three-season starring turn on the ABC comedy Suburgatory, Jeremy Sisto is returning to his drama roots with a lead role opposite Mark Pellegrino and Kevin Alejandro in Carlton Cuse’s 10-episode A&E drama series The Returned. An adaptation of the acclaimed French series, Returned, from A+E Studios and FremantleMedia, focuses on a small town that is turned upside down when several local people who have been long presumed dead suddenly reappear, bringing with them both positive and detrimental consequences. Sisto plays Peter, a psychologist who runs a grief support group for people in the town who are struggling with the loss of loved ones from a bus accident four years ago. Law & Order alum Sisto, repped by Gersh and the Schiff Co., will segue to Returned after wrapping Fox International’s genre movie The Other Side Of The Door. He recently co-wrote, produced and starred in the indie Break Point, which premiered at SXSW.
Related: Carlton Cuse’s Adaptation Of ‘The Returned’ Gets Series Order At A&E
EXCLUSIVE: Kevin Alejandro is set as a regular opposite Mark Pellegrino in Carlton Cuse’s 10-episode A&E drama series The Returned. Also co-starring in the project, an adaptation of the acclaimed French series, are Once Upon a Time in Wonderland star Sophie Lowe and Mat Vairo (Revolution). Keith Gordon (Dexter) will direct. The Returned, from A+E Studios and FremantleMedia, focuses on a small town that is turned upside down when several local people who have been long presumed dead suddenly reappear, bringing with them both positive and detrimental consequences. Alejandro will play the town’s authoritative but accessible Sheriff Tommy Moran. Lowe plays Lena, one of Jack’s (Pellegrino) two daughters. Vairo plays one of the returned, Simon, a musician who comes back 10 years after his death. Alejandro, repped by Gersh and Main Title, was a regular on True Blood, Southland and Golden Boy. Vairo is with Gersh, Gartner/Green and Mitch Smelkinson.
Treme alumna, India Ennenga, will play opposite Mark Pellegrino in Carlton Cuse’s 10-episode A&E drama series The Returned. Ennenga will portray Camille, one of the twin daughters to Pellegrino’s Jack, a rugged father who loses his girls in a school bus crash four years prior. The Returned, from A+E Studios and FremantleMedia, is an adaptation of the acclaimed French series, which focuses on a small town that is turned upside down when several local people, who have been long presumed dead suddenly reappear, bringing with them both positive and detrimental consequences. Ennenga, repped by Innovative and Invictus Entertainment, will next be seen in Sun Belt Express and Scout.
30 Rock alum Keith Powell has been cast on the final season of HBO’s The Newsroom in the recurring role of Wyatt Geary, the new Human Resources Vice President for AWM. Powell, repped by SMS and Leverage, had a recurring part on NBC’s About a Boy and was a series regular on 30 Rock for seven seasons.
EXCLUSIVE: Lost alum Mark Pellegrino, who played Jacob on the hit ABC series, is reuniting with Lost co-showrunner Carlton Cuse. Pellegrino has been tapped as a lead in Cuse’s 10-episode straight-to-series A&E drama The Returned. Cuse wrote the first episode, and he and Raelle Tucker will write and executive produce the supernatural/suspense drama, an adaptation of the acclaimed French series. The Returned, from A+E Studios and FremantleMedia North America, focuses on a small town that is turned upside down when several local people, who have been long presumed dead suddenly reappear, bringing with them both positive and detrimental consequences. Pellegrino will play the rugged Jack, father of 20-year-old twin girls Lena, and Camille, who died in a school bus crash four years ago at age 16 and are now coming back. Pellegrino, repped by Domain and Framework, co-starred on the CW’s The Tomorrow People this past season, and his series credits also include Supernatural, Revolution, Being Human, The Closer and Dexter.
A U.S. version of the acclaimed and popular French drama The Returned (Les Revenants) is a go. A&E has given a 10-episode straight-to-series order to the project, also titled The Returned, which had been on fast-track development since the network acquired the rights to the French series last fall. Carlton Cuse (Bates Motel) wrote the first episode, and he and Raelle Tucker (True Blood) will write and executive produce the supernatural/suspense series, a co-production between A+E Studios and FremantleMedia North America, with three scripts already completed. Casting will begin immediately.
Based on the International Emmy-winning French suspense series by Fabrice Gobert, which in turn was inspired by the French feature film of the same name directed by Robin Campillo, The Returned focuses on a small town that is turned upside down when several local people, who have been long presumed dead suddenly reappear, bringing with them both positive and detrimental consequences. As families are reunited, the lives of those who were left behind are challenged on a physical and emotional level as strange phenomena begin to occur. I hear A&E’s version is faithful to the original. “The Returned has the potential to be one of the most compelling drama series on cable, thanks to phenomenal scripts written by Carlton and Raelle,” said A&E general manager David McKillop. This marks the second straight-to-series order for Cuse at A&E, where he also has Psycho prequel series Bates Motel, recently renewed for a third season. With the pickup of The Returned, Cuse ties Julie Plec as the writing drama producer with the most series on the air, 3: Bates Motel, and The Returned at A&E and the upcoming horror series The Strain at FX — not too shabby for the former Lost co-showrunner who had been eyeing a slower pace following his intense stint on the complex ABC series.
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‘X Factor’ Musical ‘I Can’t Sing’ Delays Previews By Two Days
Previews of Simon Cowell‘s The X Factor musical, I Can’t Sing, have been postponed by two days at the London Palladium. Stage Entertainment and Syco Entertainment are producing the show and say they’ve decided to start previews on March 1 as opposed to February 27 due to “technical issues caused by the ambitious staging of the new musical comedy.” Rebecca Quigley, producer for Stage Entertainment, said, “As audiences will soon see, the production is hugely ambitious, and the volume of installation and scale of the set means that technical work has taken slightly longer than could have been anticipated to make the show audience-ready.” Nigel Harman (EastEnders, Downton Abbey) is playing a character based on Cowell in the musical that’s directed by Olivier Award-winner and Tony nominee Sean Foley. British comedian Harry Hill wrote the show.
Quentin Tarantino To Present Scarlett Johansson’s Honorary Cesar
Quentin Tarantino has been enlisted by France’s Académie des Arts et Techniques du Cinéma to present Scarlett Johansson with this year’s honorary César Award. The director will hand the award to Johansson this Friday at the 39th César Awards ceremony in Paris. Tarantino himself received the prize in 2011. Read More »
Canal Plus’s The Returned (Les Revenants) is probably the hottest global drama format at the moment. The stylish zombie series, a breakout hit in France and number of international territories, just won an International Emmy for Best Drama series and has a high-profile remake in the works at A&E with Carlton Cuse. Now Sundance Channel, which had acquired the first eight-episode season of the series, launching it this past Halloween, has picked up The Returned‘s upcoming second season, which is about to go into production, in a deal with Zodiak Rights. It will debut in the US in late 2014. “The Returned has proven to be an incredible addition to our slate,” said Sundance president Sarah Barnett. “We were delighted with the overwhelming critical and fan response to the series and we expect that season two will continue to seduce and chill audiences.” Created by Fabrice Gobert, Les Revenants was inspired by the 2004 feature film by the same name directed by Robin Campillo. It is set in an idyllic French mountain town where a seemingly random collection of people find themselves in a state of confusion as they attempt to return to their homes without realizing that they have been dead for several years. ABC’s similarly themed drama Resurrection premieres on March 9. Read More »
First it was a somewhat obscure 2004 movie that sold 32,000 tickets in France, then it became a French TV show that sold around the world and is being adapted into a U.S. series. Now, it’s getting the novelization treatment. Pan Macmillan has acquired worldwide publishing rights to The Returned (Les Revenants/Rebound) in a six-figure deal. Author Seth Patrick will develop two books based on storylines from the show’s first two seasons, although Season 2 won’t film until the second half of next year. Patrick wrote the supernatural horror/thriller trilogy Reviver, which was optioned by Legendary Entertainment. The first Returned novel will be published in the fall of 2014. A big hit on France’s Canal Plus, the series crossed the Channel to air in French with English subtitles in the UK and is also getting an original run in the U.S. on Sundance Channel – rare for a foreign-language program. A&E Network nabbed rights for an American remake to be developed as a co-production between A+E Studios and FremantleMedia North America. Deadline reported last month that Lost and Bates Motel‘s Carlton Cuse is in discussions about taking on the adaptation. The story focuses on a small town that is turned upside down when several local people who have been long presumed dead suddenly reappear, having not aged and unaware of their own fatality. Read More »
EXCLUSIVE: Hit French series The Returned (Les Revenants) is getting an American remake. A&E Network has nabbed rights to the supernatural/suspense drama, which will be developed as a co-production between A+E Studios and FremantleMedia North America. There is no writer in place but I hear the network is in discussions with Carlton Cuse, executive producer/co-showrunner of A&E’s breakout hit Bates Motel to take on the adaptation.
Created by Fabrice Gobert, Les Revenants was inspired by the 2004 feature film by the same name directed by Robin Campillo (English-language title They Came Back). It focuses on a small town that is turned upside down when several local people who have been long presumed dead suddenly reappear, having not aged and unaware of their own fatality. As they attempt to resume their lives, strange phenomena and gruesome murders begin to occur. “The Returned takes an incredibly unique approach, filled with suspense and twists and turns, to the subject of the living dead,” said A&E’s EVP and general manager David McKillop. Added FMNA CEO Thom Beers, “Having seen Fabrice Gobert’s original version and the success the series has had in France, we’re thrilled to be partnering with the team at A+E to bring this enigmatic thriller to U.S. audiences.” Read More »
Sundance Channel has acquired U.S. broadcast rights to the eight-part French supernatural drama The Returned from Music Box Films. The series, created by Fabrice Gobert and distributed by Zodiak Rights, is based on the feature film Les Revenants by Robin Campillo. It will premiere on Sundance Channel on Halloween, October 31, and air every Thursday night at 9 PM. “We decided to take zombies to a new and utterly original level — we made them French!” stated Sarah Barnett, President of Sundance Channel. In an idyllic French mountain town, a seemingly random collection of people find themselves in a state of confusion as they attempt to return to their homes. What they don’t know yet is that they have been dead for several years, and no one is expecting them back. Their arrival also coincides with a series of gruesome murders which bear a chilling resemblance to the work of a serial killer from the past. The Returned was a breakout hit for France’s Canal Plus when it premiered last fall and also did very well on UK’s Channel 4, drawing an average of 1.5 viewers. A second season of eight episodes goes into production in France in early 2014. The Sundance acquisition comes on the heels of Zodiak selling The Returned‘s U.S. rights to Music Box, which announced a VOD/DVD release set for January. There also is an English-language adaptation in the works.
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House alum Omar Epps, Kurtwood Smith and youngster Landon Gimenez round out the cast of ABC drama pilot The Returned, from Brillstein Entertainment, Brad Pitt’s Plan B and ABC Studios. The three are set for lead roles in the project, written by Aaron Zelman and directed by Charles McDougall. It chronicles how the lives of the people in Arcadia are forever changed when their deceased loved ones return. WME-repped Epps plays Martin Bellamy, an agent with the United States Immigration and Customs Enforcement. Smith plays Harold (Smith) whose dead son Jacob (Gimenez) is among the returned.
Sarah Bolger extending her relationship with ABC with a lead role in the network’s single-camera comedy Mixology, directed by Larry Charles from a script by Jon Lucas and Scott Moore. Set in the world of a sexy Manhattan bar, Mixology, from ABC Studios, chronicles the exploits of singles, five guys and five girls, in search of love — all over the course of one night. Bolger will play one of them, Janey, Jessica’s (Alexis Carra) sweet, naive, little sister from New Jersey. Tonight is her big night in the city and she is woefully unprepared for the aggressive Manhattan dating scene. CAA-repped Bolger recurs on ABC/ABC Studios’ Once Upon A Time as Princess Aurora last season starred in their Shonda Rhimes-produced pilot Gilded Lilys. The Tudors alumna toplines two indies that are yet to come out, Crush and Kiss Me.
Mark Hildreth has joined another ABC/ABC Studios pilot, drama The Returned, from Brillstein Entertainment, Brad Pitt’s Plan B and ABC Studios. Written by Aaron Zelman and directed by Charles McDougall, the project chronicles how the lives of the people in Arcadia are forever changed when their deceased loved ones return. Hildreth, repped by Untitled and SMS, will play Preacher Tom Hild, the local minister, who starts to question his beliefs when the dead start coming back. Read More »
Melissa George has been tapped for a lead role opposite Janet Montgomery in ABC’s drama pilot Gothica. Set in the present day, the project, created by Matt Lopez and exec produced by Mark Gordon and Nick Pepper of The Mark Gordon Co., weaves together a mythology that incorporates the legends of Dracula, Jekyll and Hyde, Frankenstein and Dorian Gray. It centers on journalist Grace Van Helsing (Janet Montgomery) who takes over her family’s hometown newspaper. George, repped by ICM Partners, 3 Arts and Smelkinson, will play Fiona Hunter, the series’ most formidable force, and everyone – from Grace, to Dorian (Chris Egan), to Victor Frankenstein (Tom Ellis) – will find their mettle and savvy tested by this deliciously cunning woman. Aussie George recently toplined Frank Spotnitz’s BBC/Cinemax series Hunted. While the series ended when BBC opted not to renew it, Ciinemax and Sportnitz have been plotting two-hour movies centered on George’s character, which has developed strong fan following. Read More »
Samaire Armstrong (The Mentalist) and British actor Sam Hazeldine (The Raven) have been cast in ABC’s drama pilot The Returned, from Brillstein Entertainment, Brad Pitt’s Plan B and ABC Studios. Written by Aaron Zelman and directed by Charles McDougall, the project chronicles how the lives of the people in Arcadia are forever changed when their deceased loved ones return. Armstrong, repped by Leverage and APA, plays Elaine, an attractive and snarky woman with a controlling personality who loses her composure when her father seems to have come back from the dead. Hazeldine, repped by Luber Roklin and UK’s Rights House, will play Abel, a mysterious man coming back from the past. Hazeldine, the son of British actor James Hazeldine, next co-stars in another Plan B project, the George Clooney-starring/directed feature The Monuments Men. This is Hazeldine’s second ABC drama pilot — he was in Scruples last season.
Being Human‘s Lenora Crichlow has joined another ABC pilot, the untitled Cullen Bros. comedy from 20th TV. It centers on Terry Gannon (Maggie Lawson), a recently divorced single mother who temporarily moves in with her estranged father (James Caan), a beer-swilling former baseball player. Brit Crichlow, repped by Schachter Entertainment and UK’s BWH Agency, will play Gigi, a mom whose son tries … Read More »
Matt Craven has been cast in ABC’s drama pilot The Returned. The project, from Brillstein Entertainment, Brad Pitt’s Plan B and ABC Studios, is based on the upcoming novel by Jason Mott. Written by Aaron Zelman and directed by Charles McDougall, it chronicles how the lives of the people in Arcadia are forever changed when their deceased loved ones return. Craven will play Fred, the local Sheriff who has been a widower ever since his wife died in an accident 32 years ago. Craven, repped by Frontline Management’s Craig Dorfman and SDB Partners, recurs as Secretary of the Navy Clayton Jarvis on NCIS and just wrapped Roland Emmerich’s White House Down. Read More »
EXCLUSIVE: Director Charles McDougall has signed a two-year overall deal with ABC Studios. Under the seven-figure pact, McDougall will direct and executive produce ABC Studios’ ABC drama pilot The Returned this season. The Returned, co-produced by Brillstein Entertainment Partners and Brad Pitt’s Plan B, is based on the upcoming novel by Jason Mott. Written by Aaron Zelman, it chronicles how the lives of the people in Arcadia are forever changed when their deceased loved ones return. (The project’s original location, Aurora, was changed out of respect for the victims of the Aurora, Co. shooting)
Most of the pilots McDougall has directed have gone to series. What’s more, most of those series have gone the distance, including ABC/ABC Studios’ Desperate Housewives, whose pilot earned McDougall a directing Emmy Award, Showtime’s The Tudors and CBS’ The Good Wife. Last season, he helmed the pilot for Fox’s The Mindy Project. WME-repped McDougall most recently has directed episodes of Mindy, NBC’s The Office and Parks & Recreation and Netflix’s House Of Cards. The deal with McDougall is part of ABC Studios’ strategy to beef up its talent roster with top-tier showrunners and directors. The studio recently signed a multi-year pact with Josh Schwartz and Stephanie Savage’s Fake Empire.
In a late buy, ABC has put in development The Returned, a serialized drama produced by Brad Pitt’s Plan B, Brillstein Entertainment Partners and ABC Studios. Written by Aaron Zelman (AMC’s The Killing), The Returned is based on the debut novel by Jason Mott, which is slated to be published next September by Mira Books. The rights to the book sparked a bidding war among several production companies and studios. Brillstein and Plan B were able to land the property in their first teaming together, and the project was taken to ABC Studios where Brillstein is based. Executive producing alongside Zelman are JoAnn Alfano and Jon Liebman from BEP and Dede Gardner and Jeremy Kleiner from Plan B.
The Returned is one of several projects BEP has set up this season, including two with CSI creator Anthony Zuiker: soap Taboo at ABC and an Alice In Wonderland sequel at NBC. Zelman is repped by UTA and Circle of Confusion.